first_imgNovelist Michael Collins, member of the Notre Dame class of 1987, read excerpts from his most recent novel, “The Death of All Things Seen,” on Wednesday in the Hammes Notre Dame Bookstore.As an undergraduate, Collins was a varsity track athlete at Notre Dame on scholarship from Limerick, Ireland, majoring in English and business.“I came as an athlete and only survived two years at Notre Dame on scholarship, and I was allowed by the benevolence of [University President Emeritus] Fr. [Theodore] Hesburgh to stay without finishing my running career,” Collins said. “What he did say was, ‘If you’re going to stay on here, do something, don’t be a quitter. You’re not leaving the team because you’re a failure.’ And I said ‘No, I want to become educated. I want to do something else.’”That “something else” was first programming software — a skill he taught himself — at Microsoft under Bill Gates, and then later becoming a successful novelist whose works have been translated into 17 languages.William O’Rourke, professor emeritus and founder of the Notre Dame Creative Writing graduate program, said Collins was the reason he founded the program.“Michael was one of the most extraordinary students I’ve ever encountered, and it wasn’t just because he had over-the-horizon genius in writing,” O’Rourke said. “He has this ability of prose which very few people have, he’s a long distance runner world class and he also worked with Bill Gates at Microsoft.“He traverses three cultures.”One of Collins’ early novels, “The Keepers of Truth,” which is set in a town that closely resembles South Bend, was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the IMPAC Award. The book led to both his recognition in the literary world and his firing from Microsoft, because they were unaware of his writing career, O’Rourke said.Since then, Collins has written 10 novels in total, all part of an American series that “lament the passing of American greatness,” Collins said.Collins read from his most recent novel, “The Death of All Things Seen”, which is the last in the series.“[The Death of All Things Seen is] a Chicago novel. It’s both sociological, realistic and philosophical — a genre that’s very popular these days,” O’Rourke said.Collins attributed his recent success to the current political climate surrounding the election of President Donald Trump.“When I started writing, it was to understand my own country, to process all that I had left behind in Ireland — again in 1983, Catholics versus Protestants and the whole in Ireland, you got to America and you never wanted to go home.” Collins said. “Writing is about psychotherapy for me. Perhaps it takes a point of dislocation to better receive the past or understand it. It would not be until I became an engineer for Microsoft in the mid ’90s that I would begin to reflect on our collective future.”“The Death of All Things Seen” begins in 2008 in the wake of the economic crisis and the election of then-President Barack Obama. The novel “moves around the central idea that there is no single narrative anymore — that each life simply occupies the same moment, that one’s perception and understanding of the world is never the same to any one person,” Collins said. “This is a world of fracture.”Collins, who is an ultra runner in addition to novelist and is captain of the Irish National 100k team, says that distance running and writing overlap in the areas of self-deprivation and discipline.“Every book takes about three months to write. You spend a lot of time preparing for a book and then you have to find a three-month space to do it. Writing a book is not difficult when you decide to do it,” Collins said. “I do 100-mile races, people think three months is long, but 100 miles is long too. If you prepare for it … you say on that particular day, ‘I’m going to do it,’ to the detriment of everything else in your life.”Collins then offered some advice to aspiring novelists.“Compress everything into a short period of time. If you give yourself too much time to do something, you give yourself an out.”Tags: creative writing, Ireland, Michael Collins, rev. theodore hesburgh, The Death of All Things Seen, Tracklast_img read more

first_imgPart one of my Finovate recap focused on a pair of big ideas intent on upending conventional fintech wisdom.Innovation in banking often is evolutionary rather than revolutionary, however, and more of this year’s showcase tilted toward market-ready solutions offering incremental improvements to existing models, including several with particular relevance for credit unions.Much attention was devoted to the monetization (and de-papering) of the mortgage process:• AI Foundry suggests that while it’s fairly easy to get to “yes” online, conversion issues emerge during the follow-up paperwork.The firm’s Agile Mortgage product applies machine learning to provide greater insight to application status—for both the applicant and loan officer—during the remainder of the trail. continue reading » 12SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

first_img Published on April 27, 2012 at 12:00 pm Contact Alexandra: | @LexieHitzler Comments Facebook Twitter Google+center_img A State Supreme Court justice withheld decision to proceed with the ongoing defamation case filed against Syracuse University and men’s head basketball coach Jim Boeheim.Justice Brian DeJoseph announced the court will need at least two weeks before ruling on the slander suit at the hearing at the Onondaga County Supreme Court held on Friday at 2 p.m.Former ball boys Bobby Davis and Mike Lang are suing Boeheim and the university for defamation after Boeheim accused the stepbrothers of lying and seeking money after they came forward with accusations of sexual abuse against Bernie Fine, former associate basketball coach for the men’s basketball team. Boeheim’s lawyers argue the coach’s statements were merely hyperbolic and sarcastic.Fine, who was fired from the university Nov. 27, has denied all sexual abuse allegations and has not been charged. He was recently hired as a consultant for the Maccabi Bazan Haifa basketball team in Israel.Attorneys from both sides appeared before DeJoseph. He said both lawyers had given him plenty to review, and he hoped to have a decision within the next two weeks.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textIn Friday’s hearing, lawyers representing Boeheim stated their claim that Boeheim’s case should be dismissed, as he is not guilty of defamation because he made statements of opinion that are protected by the constitution.Lawyers said Boeheim wanted to ‘constitutionally protect himself by offering his opinion’ during a public debate that compared Boeheim to Joe Paterno in the recent Pennsylvania State University case.Attorneys argued that Boeheim had the right to offer his opinion and said reasonable readers would be able to distinguish Boeheim’s statements to the press as his own opinion.‘In his emotional state, he was supporting his long-time assistant,’ said attorney Helen Cantwell, who represents SU.Lawyers representing Davis and Lang said Boeheim made baseless statements to the press that could lead readers to believe their clients were guilty of crimes. Both Davis and Lang were present for the hearing, but Boeheim was not.Davis said after the hearing that he thought it was important to attend the hearing to show support for the lawyers and that he is still confident in the case.‘I am absolutely confident that this is the right thing to do,’ Davis said.Tom Evans, legal counsel for SU, declined to comment after the hearing and said anything that needed to be said had already been stated.High-profile attorney Gloria Allred, representing Davis and Lang, was present for the hearing and said she was confident that DeJoseph would give careful thought to the arguments presented by both sides of the case.‘I am very, very concerned about the way (my clients) have been treated by the university and coach,’ Allred said after the hearing. ‘We’re going to continue to be here to support them.’Allred said she couldn’t predict when a decision will be reached.Said Allred: ‘I don’t have a crystal ball; it could be two weeks, it could be more than that.’ in Chief Dara McBride contributed reporting to this article.  last_img read more